G-Force technology to cool tube
inventor James Dyson has been working closely with Transport
for London (TfL) on a revolutionary plan to cool the London
Underground. The European heatwave has resulted in temperatures
on the failing underground train system to exceed the legal
limits for transporting cattle. The desperate Mayor of London,
Ken Livingstone, had offered a £100,000 cash prize to
anyone who could design a system that could be used to successfully
claw down the temperature, however, critics have claimed that
the chosen technology is certain to lead to fatalities.
shot to fame in the 1980’s through inventing the rollerball
wheelbarrow, and later the Dyson vacuum cleaner. This latest
scheme sees the inventor leading a team of the Mayor’s
consultant engineers in a revolutionary plan to adapt Column
Vortex Technology, first unveiled in the Dyson vacuum cleaner,
to an air conditioning system which will cool the London Underground.
the quest for a successful solution it was recently revealed
that a myriad of concepts had been modelled using different
approaches to enhance traditional air conditioning systems.
However, it quickly became apparent that the force of airflow
developed through conventional methods was grossly inadequate
to sufficiently flood cold air across the network in its entirety.
“Dyson” solution, adopts a much more holistic approach.
It will, in
essence, manufacture vortex winds, which will force cool air
from west to east across the capitals tube stations. All tube
stations will simply be assigned “blow” or “suck”
status depending on their strategic location. Transposing the
science into practice takes on an entirely new visualisation.
For example, on the Central Line, vortices of chilled air will
be blasted down the escalator shafts of West Ruslip and Ealing
Broadway, spiralling at speeds of up to 115 mph eastwards across
the city to be spat out by towering “suck” turbines
at Stratford and Epping.
what is set to become air conditioning, implemented on the largest
scale ever, the system has been coined 'The Tuba'. Mayor Livingstone
has set in motion a discussion group to bottom out what effects
'The Tuba' will have on everyday Tube users.
serious consequences could reasonably be anticipated from initiating
such strong winds in such confined space,” said the former
GP turned Major, unveiling the idea at yesterday’s press
conference. “It’s a bitter pill to swallow, however,
the benefits are thought to far outweigh the drawbacks”.
managed to track down a disgruntled air-flow modeller who was
the project for expressing his reservations regarding adapting
the fledgling G-Force technology. Suffering from acute bronchitis
due to the stuffy working conditions,
we met with our source at his New Cross flat. “The man’s
bonkers, you don’t need a PhD to realise that the turbines
used to generate the force of the magnitude required, will be
capable of ingesting
people. I’m not saying the plan won’t achieve the
desired cooling effect, but distinct fear of death is not the
answer to getting commuters back on the buses. Put it this way,
if this lunacy goes ahead, I’ll be commuting by bike”.
is believed that the manufactured winds would be so strong that
they would impact on travel times, with commuters travelling
westwards taking longer than those travelling in an easterly
direction, being effectively sucked towards their destination.
Children would have to be secured to their parents and small
dogs such as chihuahuas, would be banned. Clearly, busking would
be forbidden, as tossed coins could take on far more lethal
news of ‘The Tuba’ cooling system effectively sucking
The City and Canary Wharf areas was welcomed by one North Acton
based City stockbroker we stopped for comment. “Any system
which not only cools the tube, but gets me to work quicker would
greatly benefit my quality of life – that Ken’s
a bloody marvel”. The Piccadilly Line south of Hounslow
is to be omitted from the scheme as it is thought
it might create dangerous downdrafts at Heathrow airport. Work
is scheduled to go ahead from the end of September 2003.